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25 November, 2016 00:00 00 AM
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No need to deploy army, says Ivy

AL, BNP candidates submit nomination papers for NCC polls
Staff reporter
No need to deploy army, says Ivy

The Awami League (AL) wants the Narayanganj City Corporation elections to be free, fair and competitive so that its arch rival, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), cannot raise questions about the polls. On the other hand, the BNP is taking the NCC polls as the last test case to see whether there is any change in the stand and approach of the ruling party. The AL has nominated its candidate and instructed local rebel leaders to work for the party's candidate, Selina Hayat Ivy, and ensure her victory in the elections slated for December 22. Party insiders said Ivy, a popular district leader and outgoing NCC mayor, was chosen because the AL’s central leadership wants to avoid making the polls controversial.
“The AL-led government did not interfere in elections in the past. We always want the Election Commission (EC) to function independently. This time, too, the EC will hold the NCC polls in a free, fair and credible manner. The EC should take steps to make the elections free and fair,” AL joint general secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif told The Independent yesterday. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. yesterday met party candidate Ivy and another verteran district leader, Shamim Osman, at her official residence, Gonobhaban, to sort out differences between them.  After the meeting, Hasina told
Shamim Osman and other Narayanganj district leaders that they should follow the party’s instructions if they want to be in politics with the AL and work for Ivy in the NCC polls. BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain said yesterday that they have taken the NCC polls as the last test case to see whether there is any change in the ruling party’s stand and approach. Shakhawat Hossain Khan, former president of the Narayanganj District Bar Association, is the party’s mayoral candidate. The BNP chairperson, Khaleda Zia, has instructed district leaders of the party to work together to come out victorious in the polls. The BNP has demanded deployment of the Army during the polls to ensure free, fair and transparent elections, in which voters will be able to cast their ballots without hindrance and intimidation.  Selina Hayat Ivy and Shakhawat Hossain Khan submitted their nomination papers to the returning officer yesterday. Ivy was the first to submit her papers, followed by Shakhawat. Ivy then spoke to journalists waiting outside. She said there is no need for Army deployment during polling, as elections will be held in a free, fair and
credible manner. Ivy said she wants to secure victory through a competitive election.  While talking to reporters, Shakhawat Hossain urged the EC to ensure a level playing field.  The nomination papers will be scrutinised on November 26 and 27. The last date for withdrawal of nomination is December 4. Electoral symbols will be allocated among the candidates on December 5.  Over 4.79 lakh voters are expected to cast their ballots to elect a city mayor, 27 ward councillors and nine women councillors (reserved seats).  The first election to the NCC was held on October 30, 2011, when Selina Hayat Ivy won the race, defeating ruling AL-backed candidate Shamim Osman.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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